Active Control of Structural Vibration

  • Stephen J. Elliott
Part of the Solid Mechanics and its Applications book series (SMIA, volume 130)


In its most general form, active control can be used to arbitrarily modify the vibration response of a structure, although in engineering applications the objective is normally to attenuate the vibration. Many actuators and sensors are required to control the vibrations of a large structure, and conventionally these are connected using a single centralised controller, designed using a detailed model of the structure. Very selective control is possible using this approach, which can, for example, modify some modes with little effect on others. However such centralised controllers may not be stable if the response of the structure changes or individual transducers fail, and can become very complicated as the structure becomes large. An alternative approach is to use multiple local control loops in a decentralised arrangement. With careful choice of the actuators and sensors, these loops are simple to design and can be guaranteed stable even if the structural response of the system changes or some transducers fail. Each actuator, sensor and controller can be constructed as a self-contained module, and although the resulting vibration control is not selective such a decentralised system can perform almost as well as a centralised system in reducing the global response of the structure.

Decentralised control for vibration isolation with multiple active mounts will be discussed in this paper as an example of an engineering structure, and this will be contrasted with the way that decentralised control loops enhance the vibration of the inner ear in the active hearing mechanism.

Key words

active control isolation decentralised control active hearing 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. [1]
    Meirovitch, L., Dynamics and Control of Structures, Wiley, 1990.Google Scholar
  2. [2]
    Fuller, C.R., Elliott, S.J. and Nelson, P.A., Active Control of Vibration, Academic Press, 1996.Google Scholar
  3. [3]
    Preumont, A., Vibration Control of Active Structures, An Introduction, 2nd edition, Kluwer Academic Publishers, 2002.Google Scholar
  4. [4]
    Sun, J.Q., Some observations on physical duality and collocation of structural control sensors and actuators, J. Sound Vib. 194, 1996, 765–770.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. [5]
    Balas, M.J., Direct velocity feedback of large space structures, J. Guidance and Control 2, 1979, 252–253.Google Scholar
  6. [6]
    Benhabib, R.J., Iwens, R.P. and Jackson, R.L., Stability of large space structure control systems using positivity concepts, J. Guidance and Control 4, 1981, 487–493.MathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  7. [7]
    Gawronski, W.K., Dynamics and Control of Structures, A Modal Approach, Springer Verlag, 1998.Google Scholar
  8. [8]
    Karnopp, D., Active and semi-active vibration isolation, ASME J. Mechanical Design 117, 1995, 177–185.Google Scholar
  9. [9]
    Elliott, S.J., Distributed control of sound and vibration, in Proc. ACTIVEO4, 2004.Google Scholar
  10. [10]
    Frampton, K.D., Decentralized vibration control in a launch vehicle payload fairing, in Proc. of the ASME Symposium on Active Noise Control in Transportation Systems, Vol. 29, 2002, pp. 155–160.Google Scholar
  11. [11]
    Chou, K.C., Guthart, G.S. and Flamm, D.S., A multiscale approach to the control of MIMO systems, in Proc. IEEE Conf. on Decision and Control, 1995, pp. 3706–3711.Google Scholar
  12. [12]
    Aubrun, J.N., Theory of the control of structures by low-authority control, J. Guidance and Control 3, 1980, 444–451.zbMATHMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  13. [13]
    Ungar, E.E., Vibration Isolation, in Noise and Vibration Control Engineering, L. Beranck and I.L. Ver (eds), Wiley, Chichester, 1992, Chapter 11.Google Scholar
  14. [14]
    Elliott, S.J., Serrand, M. and Gardonio, P., Feedback stability limits for active isolation systems with reactive and inertial actuators, J. Vibration and Acoustics 123, 2001, 250–261.Google Scholar
  15. [15]
    Serrand, M. and Elliott, S.J., Multichannel feedback control for the isolation of base-excited vibration, J. Sound Vib. 234(4), 2000, 681–704.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. [16]
    Elliott, S.J., Benassi, L., Brennan, M.J., Gardonio, P. and Huang, X., Mobility analysis of active isolation systems, J. Sound Vib. 271, 2004, 297–321.CrossRefMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  17. [17]
    Skogestad, S. and Postlethwaite, I., Multivariable Feedback Control, Wiley, New York, 1996.Google Scholar
  18. [18]
    Kim, S-M., Elliott, S.J. and Brennan, M.J., Decentralized control for multichannel active vibration isolation, IEEE Trans. on Control Systems Technology 9(1), 2001, 93–100.Google Scholar
  19. [19]
    Huang, X., Elliott, S.J. and Brennan, M.J., Active isolation of a flexible structure from base vibration, J. Sound Vib. 263, 2003, 357–376.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. [20]
    Pickles, J.O., An Introduction to the Physiology of Hearing, 2nd edition, Academic Press, London, 1988.Google Scholar
  21. [21]
    de Boer, E., Auditory physics. Physical principles in hearing theory III, Physics Report, Review Section of Physics Letters 203(3), 1991, 125–231.Google Scholar
  22. [22]
    Le Henaff, B., Elliott, S.J. and Maury, C., Modelling wave propagation in the cochlea, ISVR Technical Memorandum 925, University of Southampton, 2003.Google Scholar
  23. [23]
    Neely, S.T. and Kim, D.O., A model for active element in cochlear biomechanics, J. Acoust. Soc. Am. 79(5), 1986.Google Scholar
  24. [24]
    Yates, G.K., Basilar membrane nonlinearity and its influence on auditory nerve rate-intensity functions, Hearing Research 50, 1990, 145–162.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. [25]
    Elliott, S.J. and Harte, J.M., Models for compressive nonlinearities in the cochlea, ISVR Technical Memorandum 913, University of Southampton, 2003.Google Scholar
  26. [26]
    Gelfand, S.A., Hearing, 4th edition, Marcel Dekker, 2004.Google Scholar
  27. [27]
    Moore, B.C.J., An Introduction to the Psychology of Hearing, 5th edition, Academic Press, 2003.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stephen J. Elliott
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Sound and Vibration ResearchUniversity of SouthamptonHighfield, SouthamptonUK

Personalised recommendations